Along with flappers, zoot suits, and jazz, the roaring twenties also gave us some of the most enduring architectural styles in history. After decades of frilly Victorian confections, American architecture finally started to come into its own.
While many might point to utopian high modernism as the defining movement of the era, when it came to buildings people actually wanted to live in, the Craftsman ruled the roost.
Combining a solid build quality, gracefully proportioned rooms, and a minimum of ornamentation, craftsman style homes, and bungalows in particular, still capture that plucky American optimism today.
Which brings us to our current listing of the week in Berkeley. Though it was designed and built in 1926, it still manages to look as fresh and current as the latest iPhone. It’s like a West Elm catalog come to life. In a word, perfect.
Let’s take a look inside:
Our more eagle-eyed readers might notice the inlaid wood floors, the shiplap panelling behind the built-in-shelving, the subtle crown molding and modernist looking fireplace. Luckily, you don’t have to be an architecture buff to notice just how well proportioned and well designed this space is. It just feels right.
Amazingly, and unlike too many builder-grade new homes, that feel-good quality is amplified by taking a closer look. Check out how well those casement windows highlight the backyard foliage. Oh, and yes, that is a lemon tree.
Heading downstairs, things start to veer away from the Craftsman canon, but we’re giving them a pass since it actually improves the space.
Opening up the space with giant glass doors helps blur the line between indoors and outdoors. The recessed skylights round out the space and throw in a modern touch for good measure. We’d bet the farm that this was previously a somewhat dark room, and dark by design.
The dining room on the other hand has the same airy, open feel of the rest of the house.
There’s also some hidden goodies that some might miss at first glance. Check out those pocket doors leading to the kitchen:
Speaking of, here’s a nice angled view of the kitchen coming out of the dining room with the breakfast nook to the right. Notice how nicely the rooms flow into each other… that’s how well designed homes work!
Upstairs you’re welcomed with a bright, sunny master bedroom:
And a well proportioned master bath with his and hers sinks:
And another bright second bedroom also with double exposures. Note how the landscaping gives some privacy and improves the view.
That landscaping sure is something too isn’t it? Check out the backyard with fruit trees, slate patio, and professionally built raised beds. For you city slickers reading this, raised beds are ideal for growing vegetables and herbs.
Last but not least, although this house may be a relic from your grandmother’s era, Berkeley certainly isn’t. After a stampede of tech entrepreneurs flocked to the west coast, a touch of luxury became de reguer for most houses in the area.
In case you want to have your SCRUM meetings from home, there’s a Jacuzzi that looks like it can accommodate your whole web dev team in style.
Well, what do you think of this West Elm catalog turned to life? Have a listing coming up that you think belongs here? Let us know in the comments or drop us a line.